The day they told Ni Ying about their relationship was on her 14th birthday.
Because they had to conceal her identity, being inconvenient to disclose, therefore, this beloved person of the King Guang’an mansion could only celebrate her birthday in a sloppy and simple manner in the barrack.
But Ni Ying was not unhappy, she was not a person who liked luxury. She only pestered Li Yuanmin to make her a bowl of longevity noodles as usual on her birthday.
Li Yuanmin personally went to cook it. He rolled out a thin and long noodle enough to fill half a bowl, symbolizing a long period of happiness and longevity. The steaming noodles were nestled with a hearty poached egg and poured over with soup. How could the barrack have any good ingredients, but Ni Ying was very happy to eat it.
Because every birthday, she had her two closest relatives accompanying her, her elder brother on the left and her Royal Highness Gege on the right, it seemed that she could be the pearl in the palm for them for her whole life like this.
The sun shone through the fabric window and the dust in the air danced freely in the light. On the ground, the figures of three people pulled into a long gray-black ball merging into one.
The chopsticks fell to the ground with a thud.
Ni Ying’s eyes were filled with tears. She looked at her silent elder brother, and looked at her Royal Highness Gege who looked at her calmly.
Her cheeks tickled. When she raised her hand to touch it, there was a wet stain on her fingertip before she knew she was crying.
She didn’t know what she was crying for. Compared to the shock of hearing her two close relatives being in a relationship, her heart was filled with a kind of angry grievance. But what she was angry about, what grievances she had, she didn’t know at all. But looking at that gentle person, she actually had a little jealousy in her heart, jealousy towards her elder brother.
She didn’t even know that she was such a petty person to be terribly jealous of her own elder brother. There was an abnormal resentment in that jealousy, as if he had robbed off her own thing. But whatever it is, as long as her elder brother wanted it, she naturally won’t fight over it with him. Because no one knew better than her the love and care for herself hidden under that indifferent expression.
But tonight, she got angry for no reason. All kinds of emotions exploded in her heart, making her cry uncontrollably.
Large drops of tears slid down from her eyes. She bit her lips rigidly and used the back of her hand to violently wipe it. She glared at Ni Lie fiercely. She had never given an indifferent face to her cold elder brother, but at this moment, she couldn’t control the disgust in her heart at all, wishing to go up and hit him.
Li Nie’s eyes darkened, his Adam’s apple moved but he didn’t say anything.
Li Yuanmin lowered his eyes, sighed, and said, “A Lie, you go out first.”
Ni Lie looked at him deeply, then he took another look at A Ying as he walked out, sighed and spun away.
In the barracks, there was only Ni Ying’s faint sobs.
Li Yuanmin took her hand and patted the seat next to him a few times to make her sit down.
Ni Ying’s lips trembled. Finally she couldn’t resist and she threw herself on the table and cried.
A faint helplessness surged up in Li Yuanmin’s heart. He naturally knew Ni Ying’s hazy possessiveness towards him. But she was just a fourteen-year-old girl, how could she have known what it was?
Ni Ying suddenly propped up her upper body and stubbornly said with tears in her eyes, “They all said that Your Highness Gege is going to marry me in the future!”
“A Ying…” Li Yuanmin sighed, “Your Highness Gege can’t marry any woman in this life.”
“Why?” Ni Ying was reluctant to give up.
Li Yuanmin let out a long sigh and wiped away the tears on her cheeks.
“Because Your Highness’s Gege.. is an intersex person. ”
Ni Ying frowned, suddenly realizing something. She looked at Li Yuanmin, widening her eyes in shock.
“How could it be…”
Li Yuanmin did not speak.
In the eyes of the world, being intersex was unacceptable. Many abnormal babies were treated as monsters, drowned or burned at the beginning of their birth. If they survived, it was only by being shunned in this world, or resorting to do inexplicable dirty works. By using their abnormal bodies, they would work at places where people went to seek novelty to play with as a means to earn meager money to support themselves.
Even if he was a prince, because of such a body, his childhood was more miserable than ordinary people. Fortunately, now he could be considered to have survived.
Ni Ying was so shocked by this unexpected news that she forgot to sob, only murmuring at a loss. Perhaps because she was able to see the faint sadness on Li Yuanmin’s face, she grabbed Li Yuanmin’s arm: “So what? No matter what Your Highness Gege is, you are still my Highness Gege.”
Li Yuanmin’s heart went soft with a little helplessness. A Ying was young, and naturally did not know what it meant to be married to an intersex person.
“Why does A Ying want to marry His Highness Gege? ”
Ni Ying did not hesitate: “I want to be with Your Highness Gege for the rest of my life.”
Li Yuanmin smiled bitterly: “As long as A Ying won’t get married to a far away place, we will always be together.”
Ni Ying only felt that something was wrong, but she couldn’t say anything at all. Her chest was heaving and tears were dropping on her cheeks.
She finally reluctantly said the words in her heart: “But Your Highness Gege was robbed from me!”
She burst into tears: “You don’t belong to A Ying anymore!”
“ …… A Ying, you will eventually grow up. You will meet a lot of people, you are still young, and still don’t know what you really want… This thing… Your Highness Gege can’t give it to you, moreover…”
He glanced at Ni Ying, no longer uttering endless words, but said softly: “In the future, when you meet that person, you will naturally understand my words.”
Ni Ying looked at the person who had always been gentle and asked sadly, “But why is my elder brother different?”
“He’s different, he… is not the same.” Li Yuanmin’s eyes flowed with a soft look, he only touched her head, “But you are all the most precious people in my life.”
Seeing the faint glow on his face, Ni Ying suddenly understood something.
Under the shroud of that light, he seemed so gentle. She often felt tranquility in this gentleness.
She now finally understood what that similar glow she had always seen on his face during this period of time was.
His Highness Gege was very happy. This kind of joy in this world was something that only her elder brother could bring to him. If replaced by others, there will be no such soft glow.
In that split second, Ni Ying’s heart opened a hole, it had become even more transparent than a cicada’s slough.
She was no longer stubbornly attaching herself to that obsession. It was more important to see him shine like this than to have the exclusive possession of His Highness Gege.
This was her Highness Gege, how could she let him lose such a light.
Despite this, Ni Ying still lowered her lonely head, there was a sentence she did not say in the end.
His Highness Gege was wrong. Although she was only fourteen years old, that didn’t mean she didn’t understand what this feeling was.
Although that mixture of emotions was not passionately hot, she was absolutely certain.
For the first time in her fourteen-year-old self, she was feeling such sorrow.
She fell to her knees, falling on the knees of the person in front of her just like in the past.
She thought, if there must be someone else, she would rather this person be her elder brother.
The pastureland under the autumn sun was somewhat tranquil. The breeze blew and a burst of waves moved up and down, which had the bearings of the outskirts.
The girl walked awkwardly to the tall young man.
“Brother…yesterday, I shouldn’t have…”
Her lips moved, but she could no longer say anything. She could only throw herself into the arms of the youth.
This was the first time as far as they could remember that the two of them embraced each other.
After a moment’s hesitation, obviously at a loss of what to do with this unusual hug, Ni Lie stiffened his hands and finally slowly hugged the girl in his arms.
Li Yuanmin and Cao Gang stood on the high slope together, looking at the pair of brother and sister in the grassland who hugged each other tightly.
Li Yuanmin turned back, “He is no longer the Red Tiger King of the previous life.”
Cao Gang’s face was dejected, his beard was stubbled, and his eyes glowed blue and black. Clearly he hadn’t had a good sleep the whole night. He clenched his fist tightly.
When he woke up in the morning, he originally thought that the Third Prince had come to him to leave a final word but didn’t expect him to take him here.
Looking at the young man with a rare soft face, he thought desolately in his heart that he was indeed no longer the same.
In his memory, the tyrant who hunched his back and stiffly carried his sister’s corpse away from the capital step by step no longer existed in this world.
There was only himself that was still immersed in the crazy enthusiasm of the previous life.
He stumbled back a few steps, suddenly laughed, shook his head miserably, and slowly walked back.
The man behind him called out to him.
“Teacher, do you believe in karma? ”
Cao Gang stagnated for a moment in his original place. He turned back. He wanted to show a sarcastic laugh, but what was revealed was anger: “Your Highness does not need to say sarcastic remarks here. I didn’t expect to live another heavy life. The master of the cold palace during those years has grown up into such a person now. Karma, haha, karma, I have underestimated my enemy and tasted the bitter result, there is no need for Your Highness to mention it!”
“Teacher has misunderstood,” Li Yuanmin did not care about his angry words, only calmly said: “The recent news from the capital mentioned that Wang Chaoluan has been stripped of the position of a noble concubine. She’s now only a small character. The Wang clan henchmen have all been uprooted by the eldest prince. She no longer has any backers. The Fourth Prince has offended so many people, there is no need for teacher to dirty your hand.”
Cao Gang paused: “Really? ”
“After some time, I believe even teacher will hear about it. Although Royal Father loves Fourth Brother…” Li Yuanmin looked at him and said obscurely: “But how long can this kind of protection last?”
That body in the capital is no longer very good. In another year, the ruler will change face.
Cao Gang understood what he meant and clenched his teeth tightly. His chest was heaving, his breathing hot. He only hated that he couldn’t finish him with his own hands like in his previous life.
His heart was stirring, when he squinted:
“It was you? ”
“Teacher is overestimating me.” Li Yuanmin laughed: “Wang Chaoluan, mother and son were both vicious, causing all kinds of destruction. Having today’s result, it’s them suffering the consequences of their own actions. Moreover, I have only conveniently delivered a knife to Eldest Imperial Brother, that’s all.”
He whispered, “So, I believe in karma.”
After living through two lifetimes, he couldn’t have been clearer.
“Why?” As soon as Cao Gang asked out loud, he knew he had asked a stupid question. The son of the Cold Palace of the West Palace had suffered countless invisible poisonous means from the Wang clan’s mother and son.
Karma, everything was karma.
He shook his head and sighed, closed his eyes, and spun away into the distance.
“Where is teacher going? ”
“Where?” A burst of laughter came, “I feel at home anywhere. I could just drift about without restraint now.”
Li Yuanmin hurriedly took a few steps: “Teacher, why don’t you stay behind?”
The person in front of him paused and looked back at him: “Your Highness is not worried that I will have other thoughts of robbing away your beloved general?”
“Teacher won’t do it.” Li Yuanmin pulled the corner of his mouth, “Just now, you were obviously also happy for A Lie.”
Cao Gang froze and stopped talking.
He also heard the person in front of him say: “With teacher’s talent, if you put yourself in the mountains and rivers, it will be too much of a pity. Although Lingnan is an uncivilized territory, there are many places where you can show your strength. Why don’t teacher stay in Lingnan for the time being? If you have a better destination in the future, Ben Wang won’t stop you.”
Li Yuanmin bowed deeply to him with a big salute: “This student pleads earnestly for teacher’s help.”
A gust of wind blew through, and the long grass rustled.
Cao Gang looked at the young man in the grassland who was instructing the young girl to ride a horse, turned his head, and stepped forward to support the person in front of him.
Li Yuanmin’s face was overjoyed.
“However…” Cao Gang’s eyes suddenly flashed a glimmer of light, “I also have a request.”
“Oh?” Li Yuanmin hurriedly asked, “Teacher might as well say it directly, if it’s within Ben Wang’s power, I will help you with all my might.”
The earnestness of that good face was definitely not a fraud, Cao Gang almost sympathized with him.
“I only hope that Your Highness will take pity on your own body. Don’t just indulge the overlord to run amok and allow him whatever he wants every night.”
Li Yuanmin’s eyes widened without warning. Thinking of his many years of self-cultivation, he still couldn’t help but express some anger. He thought he had hidden it well, but who is Cao Gang? Even if he’s very careful about it, who was he against this military counselor who was full of rigorous schemes and deep foresight?
They must have been followed by him during these few nights!
Remembering those chaotic nights, his face slowly steamed red. He immediately turned his back, then his snow-white ears ruthlessly revealed the filling that was as red as dripping blood.
He clenched his fists, turned his face sideways, used all his power to angrily say: “If you let others know about this matter, don’t blame Ben Wang for not caring about our student-teacher relationship!”
Cao Gang finally got the upper hand. With a smile on his face, he clapped his hands together and saluted: “I do not dare, I will absolutely protect this secret for Your Highness.”
After suppressing his heart for many days, he finally had a moment of brightness. He pretended to say, “In this way, I will be indebted to Your Highness and will be in Your Highness care in the future.”
“Humph!” Li Yuanmin brushed off his sleeve and left.
Cao Gang laughed loudly.
The author has something to say: Young ladies’ feelings are always strong. A Ying will definitely meet her destined husband in the future.